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A Salute to Military Moms

Mother's Day is fast approaching. I would like to take this opportunity to recognize all that military moms do and suggest some ideas for showing our appreciation for this essential, but often under-appreciated role.

Military Moms who are spouses of service members are called dependents, but they are far from dependent. They take on the primary child rearing roles, act as a single parent during frequent deployments, and run the home when their spouse is away. While their husband is focusing on advancing his career at a new base, Moms are assuring their children are getting settled in a foreign environment. They are wiping away tears at the first day of school, scoping out trustworthy preschools and child care, and enrolling their children in activities so they can find new friends to replace the ones they are missing.

Life as a military Mom can be lonely too. Many Moms have their own jobs and careers that they are forced to give up time and time again after each PCS move. They have to repeatedly say goodbye to friends and family and struggle with starting over and developing a support structure at each base. And once they finally get settled, it is time to move again!

Moms who are active duty have it just as tough. They are constantly juggling their job responsibilities with caring for their children, and we all know how unpredictable military jobs can be. At the drop of a hat, an active duty Mom may have be called on a mission or to the field for several days. Deployments require Moms to place their children in the care of others for up to a year at a time. These extended periods away from their children can be heartbreaking.
For those of us who are active duty or dependant military Moms, let's take a moment on Mother's Day to salute ourselves for persevering in the struggle to serve both our country and our families. Get a pedicure, sleep in late, have lunch with a friend, put the kids in daycare for the day and shop!

And to those family members of military Moms, let them know you appreciate all that they do! Take them out to a Mother's Day brunch, write a list of all the things you love about them, and let Mom put her feet up for while as you tend to her every need. If even for just one day , a little love and acknowledgement can raise her spirit for months.

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